IT COMES IN TIDES AND OTHER POEMS, showcases a striking talent for the formal style in poetry. The collection is masterful for employing rhyme, meter, and the wordplay of puns and paradox. In the celebration of the highs and lows of romance and abiding friendship, the poems are subtle and emotional, complex but always comprehensible. They are so rhythmic that the image of tides hitting a shoreline best describes them. They share the gift for point and counterpoint in their musical precision. The playful wit, conspicuous in the love poems, captivates the astute reader. IT COMES IN TIDES AND OTHER POEMS will inspire both poets and lovers who have a zest for romance in rhyme and meter.
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- The reason this collection should be a book is that a reader like me wants to consult and delight in the poems again and again. I have two bookcases of poetry books, but only a shelf of favorite fiction for that reason. I love your poetry. Nearly every one feels priceless.“Dilemma,” and “ Ensemble” are my last two jolts from your collection of poems. Having the book is practical. I can take one poem to heart, put aside the collection, take it up on the morrow. It feels as though reading the poems will make a difference in my life. It takes much to ask therapy of poetry, but the shimmer of your words and thoughts creates the illusion. Keep writing the unexpected for which thinking people thirst. You pack volumes into everything you write. I don't like to overpraise, but you have been soaring in your poetry. For example, your latest one, "On Transience"; it is word perfect and marvelous. Such a profound gentle poem speaks to all of us. You will and should continue with your novels of actions and ideas, but in writing poetry you have moved towards a creative center that is yours alone. The poems are matchless. They have a sort of lagniappe, French for an extra meaning you tuck into the clarity. Whenever I read one of your poems, it stops me in my tracks. Whatever praise your readers gave Poems For Two Violins, the ones from this year fly even higher. Maybe it's because you are giving away your "secret" knowledge of life. They are more beautiful, realistic and wise yet ethereal and jewel-like. In years to come, I would put a few from the first book into any new book of collected poems--those that reach the highest level of poetry where readers cannot do without them.
- Thank you for the gift of these beautiful poems. I think “Comfort Zone” is your best yet. A finely tuned marriage of meter and rhyme, sustained metaphor throughout, a tone both soft and ironic. The last line really sings: “The finite immortality of art.” A line worthy of Emily Dickinson. “Liquid Gold” nails the hope of finding meaning in the aging body. “ . . . dessert wine is prompted by noble rot” is brilliant. That is the challenge: to find the beauty that comes from the inevitable shriveling and pruning. Your parallel to art is an apt one—it’s the pruning of a poem that lets it shine. As in art, so in life. The poems on friendship, the waxing and waning of love, reveal a generous and romantic soul. I love seeing the poems collected, and echoing their themes of love and loss. Your poems are a “keepsake” and I will keep them in my heart, for the sake of friendship, for the love of art.
- What a thought-provoking, reflective, thoroughly absorbing collection of poems. I took my time reading them in the first section, only to realize how connected they were. They are perfect for this retirement time in my life, for things to ponder. I did see elements of the Jesuit examen which delighted me, as well as Emperor Hadrian’s full last speech. What are my favorites, you might ask? They change on every rereading. Today it’s “Polyglot Buddhism,” “Dilemna,”and “A Four Room Suite.” Your Jeux D’Esprit were an additional pleasure. “At a Loss” was shocking and I laughed out loud at “Longevity.” Thank you, thank you for another Rocasalvo gem to add to my collection to read and reread.
- Your manuscript, It Comes In Tides and Other Poems, was brought to our attention at the latest Editorial Board meeting when we discussed the potential of its publication. Having read all the reports and taken note of the Editors’ opinions we can confidently state that your submission was found to be one of confronting honesty, intriguing expression, and modernity in its richness as a poetry collection. A thoughtful, considered, and assured collection that transfixes the reader, resonating deeply through the complexity and nuance of its social commentary and romantic tones, while retaining clarity in its authorial voice; the emotion that drives the work is deeply evocative, transportive and infectious. Each poem is unique, captivating, and well-written, building upon each other to create a tumultuous, compelling, restorative narrative that lingers with the reader long after completion. Ultimately, ‘It Comes In Tides’ is felt to be a worthy addition to the highly competitive genre with the chance to stand out with its empowering, unfiltered, distinctive perspective.